Arthur Goldman is a rich Jewish industrialist, living in luxury in a Manhattan high-rise. He banters with his assistant Charlie, often shocking Charlie with his outrageousness and ...
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Following the suicide of an elderly Jewish man, a journalist in possession of the man's diary investigates the alleged sighting of a former SS captain, who allegedly commanded a concentration camp during WWII.
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Rainer Werner Fassbinder
Arthur Goldman is a rich Jewish industrialist, living in luxury in a Manhattan high-rise. He banters with his assistant Charlie, often shocking Charlie with his outrageousness and irreverence about aspects of Jewish life. Nonetheless, Charlie is astonished when, one day, Israeli secret agents burst in and arrest Goldman for being not a Jewish businessman but a Nazi war criminal. Whisked to Israel for trial, Goldman forces his accusers to face not only his presumed guilt--but their own. Written by
Jim Beaver <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This film was part of the American Film Theatre series, an experiment in marketing films (all based on plays) that would not otherwise have been able to get financing. Instead of being released to the general public, only people who purchased a subscription to the American Film Theatre series could buy tickets to any of its films. (Exceptions were made for movie critics and members of award-granting organizations, such as the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences which awards the Oscars.) As a result, only a small number of people ever saw any of the films in their theatre runs. To enhance the value of the subscriptions, subscribers were guaranteed that the films would never be shown on television and never released to the general public. Legal issues connected with these guarantees kept this film from being available in any form for nearly 3 decades. It was finally released on DVD in 2003. The American Film Theatre experiment was abandoned after 2 years. See more »
The Nazi Concentration Camps were run by the SS. The Wehrmacht (the regular Germany Army, also referred to as the Heer) was not directly involved in running the camps. Also The SS used it's own rank titles, so Dorf would have been known as a Standartenfuhrer instead of an Oberst (Colonel). See more »
I have viewed this movie many times in a poor quality VHS and now finally on DVD. It's difficult to explain the impact this movie can have and one viewing will not do it. It takes several viewings to really get the plot line. Millionaire Jewish entrepreneur Arthur Goldman rules his financial empire from a penthouse apartment overlooking Manhattan. Seemingly at the edge of sanity, Goldman holds forth on everyting from Papal edicts to ex-wives, from baseball to his family's massacre in a Nazi concentration camp. When Goldman remarks on a blue Mercedes continuously parked outside his building, Goldman's captive audience of assistant and chauffeur dismiss their boss' anxiety as encroaching paranoia. But each of Goldman's passionate, seemingly capricious ravings are transformed into a shocking, inadvertent deposition when Israeli agents capture Goldman and put him on trial as Adolph Dorf, the commandant of the concentration camp where Goldman's family was supposedly exterminated. In a trial scene of unrelenting intensity, crafts what the Detroit Free Press called "a white-hot lead performance," mutating from eccentric Goldman to sociopath Dorf and beyond. The riddle of Dorf's true identity becomes wrapped in an enigma of cunning self-treachery and single-minded obsession.
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